What are the dos and don’ts after bariatric surgery?
Remember that weight loss surgery has the power to change your life, but it’s only the starting step. After surgery, it’s essential to take measures that can enhance the longevity of the results and improve your health and life.
Some procedures like the gastric balloon are temporary, and some, like gastric band surgery, do not alter your anatomy. It’s important to note that always follow the dietary guidelines of your physician. Here are our dos and don’ts after these types of bariatric surgery.
Don’ts after bariatric surgery:
- Do not immediately start eating your pre-surgery diet. Follow the post-procedure meal as suggested by your surgeon.
- Days 1-2 – small volumes of clear liquids at room temperature.
- Days 3-7 – Add milk (dairy or non-dairy), broth, and yoghurt.
- Week 2 – Resume eating pureed foods such as mashed vegetables or blended fruits.
- Weeks 3-4 – consume soft and easy-to-chew foods, such as scrambled eggs, soft fruits, and steamed vegetables.
- Weeks 5-8 – Start eating fresh fruits, veggies, and beans.
- Beyond Week 8 – You can now eat a regular, balanced diet.
- Do not drink Carbonated Beverages – The gases that make drinks fizzy can build up in the stomach, stretching it out and creating more space. This extra space increases the craving for carbonated beverages, and it is against your weight loss goal.
- Don’t Drink With Your Meals – Liquid in the stomach speeds up the rate at which your food moves to your small intestine. When it moves through your system too quickly, it can lead to dumping syndrome, which presents symptoms such as sweating, diarrhoea, bloating, cramping, vomiting, fast heart rate, and low blood pressure. It’s best to avoid drinking 30 minutes before and after eating. But if the dumping syndrome often occurs, consult your doctor.
Do not consume Alcohol.
Your body will be more sensitive to Alcohol than before, so drinking the same alcohol amount as before will make you more sedated, much higher than the legal limits. Alcohol consumption must be stopped for about 12 months since it has a lot of calories with little nutrition. Even when you resume drinking, it should be in small quantities. Do not drink alcohol on an empty stomach after weight loss surgery.
Do Not Smoke
Since the new stomach is narrower, smoking will make you feel pain. In addition, carbon monoxide in the smoke makes the blood cells less able to carry oxygen and nutrition to your cells. It is recommended to quit smoking permanently after weight loss surgery or avoid smoking for 2 weeks to 3 months. But the longer you wait, the better.
Wait before planning pregnancy.
It is not advisable to get pregnant immediately after a weight loss surgery since the mother has nutritional deficiencies, which is not ideal for the foetus. It takes a good 12 to 18 months for the mother to become healthy nutrition and vitamin wise.
Do’s after a Bariatric Surgery
- Do eat small meals – In any bariatric procedure, the stomach size is effectively reduced, so you probably can’t eat as much food as before without some discomfort. So eating small portions to prevent stomach upset.
- Do eat Plenty of Protein – After your surgery, you cannot eat high-calorie food. Hence the body searches for new sources of energy. This means that there will be muscle loss, too, along with fat loss. Protein is a macronutrient that helps maintain your muscle mass. First, eat protein since your stomach is small, and it becomes full faster.
Do take care of your mental health.
It is not very clear why people go into depression after the surgery. Do the following to combat post-weight loss depression:
- Consult a psychologist
- Find a similar support group.
- Do not feel embarrassed and open up about depression.
Do take vitamins
After the surgery, you will need to have all the needed vitamins and minerals, but as the surgery will affect your body’s absorption ability, you will have to take supplements. Vitamin deficiency makes you prone to different health complications like iron deficiency, memory loss, kidney diseases, etc.
Replenish yourself with plenty of water.
You should drink 2 to 3 litres of water a day and reduce the amount of caffeinated and sweet beverages. But do not drink any liquid 15 minutes before eating.
By following the doctor’s instructions, you will increase your chances of recovery faster and reduce the risks of any possible complications. Dr V.Pareek and his very capable team are with you at every step after the weight loss surgery. Reach us to avail of our services at +91 91-777-77715.